Business networking is a must for all start ups. It not only allows you to meet and greet with the local business community but it also allows you to begin measuring what people think of the products and services you have to offer. Above all though, networking is definitely a great way to form strong and long lasting relationships with other business owners... these will be the building blocks to a truly successful business.
I belong to a few networking groups myself, most notably BNI (Business Networking International), and these structured networking engagements offer myself and my company priceless relationships. The problem with a lot of start up companies is that they network with a view of creating immediate sales and not on building those priceless relationships. Although some start ups understand the importance of networking, they unfortunately fail to see the real point of it all. Business networking is not about creating sales. It is about building solid relationships with the businesses around you. Those networkers who are focused only on creating sales will find that they will actually have to do twice the work to get the business they’re after, as opposed to the others who understand the true reason for networking.